our mission

Building long-term, life-changing relationships with urban youth.

our history

1982

Dr. Kent Hutcheson, Founder

Dr. Kent Hutcheson founded Colorado UpLift in 1982 as a summer jobs program for urban, underserved youth. Dr. Hutcheson’s passion was to help urban young people find hope in hopeless circumstances.

1987

Colorado UpLift

Colorado UpLift quickly changed its strategy in 1987 to teach character qualities and life skills needed for long-term success. UpLift staff members began providing leadership and character instruction in the public school system for students from 4th grade through college. Along with the In-School Program, Colorado UpLift regularly mentored students after school and throughout the summer, improving the odds for urban youth to emerge as successful, productive young adults.

1994

Guild

The Colorado UpLift Guild was launched in 1994 and has been instrumental in providing a myriad of services including purchasing vans, creating a homework club, and running arts & crafts for youth. They have also provided Christmas bonuses for staff, the Holiday Store, an annual fashion show, theme parties, and other activities.

2000

Advanced Leadership

Advanced Leadership provides UpLift high school students with a unique opportunity to develop and cultivate leadership skills. In 2002, Advanced Leadership students learned to give back by joining board members, UpLift staff, and others in building homes for needy families in Tijuana, Mexico.

2007

Adventure

In 2007, UpLift launched its Adventure program. The program introduced urban youth to skiing & snowboarding, rafting, backpacking, camping, and other outdoor activities.

2008

Post-Secondary

Having roots in the earlier Independent Living, Life Options, and College Lift programs, the Post-Secondary Program continues with UpLift graduates into college and career development. UpLift awards over $80,000 each year to students through donor-provided scholarships.

2014

Elevate USA Formed

After seeing the success of the UpLift model, Colorado UpLift launched the Model Replication Program, aimed at helping new cities launch. In 2014, Elevate USA was formed by Colorado UpLift advocates, allowing Colorado UpLift to focus on the city of Denver and release Elevate USA to replicate the Colorado UpLift program in cities throughout the US.

our history

1982

Dr. Kent Hutcheson, Founder

Dr. Kent Hutcheson founded Colorado UpLift in 1982 as a summer jobs program for urban, at-risk youth. Dr. Hutcheson’s passion was to help urban young people find hope in hopeless circumstances.

1987

Colorado UpLift

Colorado UpLift quickly changed its strategy in 1987 to teach character qualities and life skills needed for long-term success. UpLift staff members began providing leadership and character instruction in the Public School system for students from 4th grade through college. Along with the in-school program, Colorado UpLift regularly mentored students after school and throughout the summer, improving the odds for urban youth to emerge as successful, productive young adults.

1994

Guild

The Colorado UpLift Guild was launched in 1994 and has been instrumental in providing a myriad of services including the purchase of vans, homework club and arts & crafts for youth. They have also provided Christmas bonuses for staff, the Holiday Store, organized an annual fashion show, theme parties, and other activities.

2000

Advanced Leadership

Advanced Leadership provides UpLift high school students with a unique opportunity that develops and cultivates young leaders. In 2002, Advanced Leadership students learned to give back by joining board member, UpLift staff and other in building homes for needy families in Tijuana, Mexico.

2007

Adventure

In 2007 UpLift launched its Adventure program. The program introduced urban youth to snow skiing & boarding, rafting, backpacking, camping & other outdoor activities.

2008

Post-Secondary

Having roots in the earlier Independent Living, Life Options and College Lift programs, the Post-Secondary Program continues with UpLift graduates into college and career development. UpLift awards over $80,000 each year to students through donor provided scholarships.

2014

Elevate USA Formed

After seeing the success of the UpLift model, Colorado UpLift launched the Model Replication Program, aimed at helping new cities launch. In 2014, Elevate USA was formed by Colorado UpLift advocates, allowing Colorado UpLift to focus on the city of Denver and release Elevate USA to replicate the Colorado UpLift program in cities throughout the US.

help us reach more students

our

seven

core

beliefs

  1. We believe that EVERY CHILD is of great worth and has the desire and potential to succeed.
  2. We believe that LONG-TERM, 24/7 RELATIONSHIPS with caring adults have proven positive outcomes in the lives of our urban youth.
  3. We believe that a HOLISTIC approach is essential for a strong and healthy future for our youth.
  4. We believe that FULL-TIME, SALARIED TEACHER-MENTORS WHO COME FROM SIMILAR BACKGROUNDS as the students can have a positive influence and make all the difference.
  5. We believe that the SERVANT LEADERSHIP, creating a culture of selflessness and service, is the foundation of great leadership.
  6. We believe in the intrinsic DIGNITY of every person and act accordingly.
  7. We believe that COLLABORATION yields the best long-term results, acknowledging that the complex work in our urban centers cannot be done single-handedly.

program staff

Teacher/Mentors